A 30-year-old North West man who bashed his girlfriend’s five-year-old daughter to death after she repeatedly wet herself has been sentenced to 20 years imprisonment.
Acting Judge J J Strijdom, sitting in the High Court in Klerksdorp, sentenced Tseko Seekoei of Bloemhof for the December 2015 murder of his girlfriend Dimakatso Kodisang’s daughter Kutlwano.
Seekoei was found guilty of murder, despite his claims that he had not foreseen the little girl’s death when he repeatedly hit her with a belt and shoe, tied her up and made her stand on one leg for hours.
He said in a statement he had met Kutlwano’s about six months before the incident and accepted her as his own daughter.
According to Seekoei, he had noticed that the child was ill-disciplined and had a tendency to urinate and befoul herself, which did not seem to bother her mother.
He had slapped the child on the buttocks when he realised she had wet the couch on which she was sleeping, but when she later wet herself again, lost his temper and started hitting her with his belt all over her body. He also started hitting her on her head with her mother’s shoe.
When his girlfriend tried to stop him, Seekoei pushed her away and slapped her.
According to Seekoei he then decided to punish little Kultwano by making her stand on one leg. He then tied her hands and one of her legs to the kitchen unit drawer and made her stand on one leg, but untied her and let her change legs when she became tired.
When she became “exhausted no weak” he untied her and they went to bed. The child was “crying softly and breathed a bit heavier”, but he though she was angry and tired and did not take it seriously.
His girlfriend woke him in the early hours of the morning to tell him she could not wake her daughter. When he realised “she was not fine at all”, he ran to a neighbour and his uncle to get help, but Kutlwano had already died.
Seekoei asked his girlfriend to forgive him for depriving her of the chance to raise her child.
“I am deeply hurt by the results of my unthoughtful action. I am deeply sorry for having killed a beautiful and innocent soul.
“…All that I did was not meant to cause the result that happened. I was simply trying to coach correct and discipline her to become a responsible and disciplined young girl,” he said.
The State alleged in the charge sheet Seekoei had tied the child to a door frame before he started hitting her with a belt and later threw her on the ground.
Kutlwano died of severe head injuries and also had bruises and abrasions all over her body, with ligature abrasions around her wrists and ankles.